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Hotspot hopping


When: 1.30pm

What: If it’s January 1, it has to be a trip to the zoo. Simon and Garfunkel must have been in Calcutta when they sang, “Some told me, it’s all happening at the zoo. I do believe it, I do believe it’s true.”

Must do: Wave at Babu, the chimpanzee, or watch the elephants shake their trunks.

Crowd Meter: 9/10


When: 3pm

What: The ticket queue was long enough to reach Birla Planeterium’s ticket counter. If only British premier David Cameron was in town a second time to witness the city’s love for his Queen’s relic. Three generations of the Ghosh family turned up to celebrate New Year at Victoria — grandma Pushpa, daughter Sushmita and granddaughters Pooja and Avilasha. “It’s incredibly crowded but a trip here is a must,” said Pooja. “I am generally an indoor person but it feels good to be out with family,” said Pushpa.

Must do: Take a picture or selfie flanked by the two marble lions and the grand mansion in the background.

Crowd Meter: 8/10


When: 4pm

What: Families, couples, friends took a rode on the Ganga, walked down the promenade or simply sat by the ghat and watched the sun set behind the Vidyasagar Setu.

“What a perfect way to kickstart 2014... watching the sunset by the Ganga on a cool winter evening. The place looks really beautiful,” said Gargi Som, who had come with her children Sneha, 12, Sriya, 17, and husband Joydeep.

Must do: Take a boat ride; have Pav Bhaji.

Crowd Meter: 7.5/10


When: 4.30pm

What: Being a perfect picnic spot, revellers were seen enjoying boat rides, playing badminton and cricket. Elderly citizens chatted and strolled as the soaked in the sun. Toddlers played on the swings. Several families were seen spreading bed sheets on the green grass and savouring home-cooked food.

By late afternoon it became so crowded that people had to park their cars on vacant land opposite the park.

Must do: Boating and water ballooning on the lake inside the park

Crowd Meter: 9/10


When: 4pm

What: Long queues outside hotshot rides such as Cyclone, River Cave, Rope Way and Water Chute were the common feature since afternoon. Many who had bought the multi-ride bands — that ensures unlimited trip on several amusement rides — regretted as people spent more time standing in queues than getting on the rides.

“We had to spend anything between 45 minutes to an hour to get on a ride. As a result, we had no time to try that ride for a second time,” said Kakali Sen, a resident of Jatin Shibani road, who had gone to the park with her husband and 12-year-old son.

Must do: A ride at Cyclone, the roller coaster, and photo-ops in front of the new attraction — Ice Land.

Crowd Meter: 9/10